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How Many Days in Tulum is Ideal? A Handy Guide

How Many Days in Tulum is Ideal? A Handy Guide

Planning a visit to the Yucatan Peninsula? Here’s how many days you should spend in Tulum.

How many days do you need in Tulum? That’s the million-dollar question. 

There’s a lot about Tulum to love, from archeological sites to 5-star luxury resorts and delicious dining. Tulum is a place of breathtaking beauty and adventure around every turn. 

You should plan your trip to Tulum around the many nearby sites, experiences, and accommodations; allotting a sufficient amount of time for each.

Don’t worry if this sounds daunting. We’re here to help.

Keep reading to discover how long you should plan to spend in Tulum, depending on where you want to go and what you plan to do on your trip.

Ideal Number of Days to Spend in Tulum 


The ideal number of days to spend in Tulum can differ. 

Naturally, the more sights you want to see, the longer you’ll need. Likewise, if you’re just dreaming of spending a few days on the many glorious beaches, your stay can be much, much shorter.

Whether you’re there for a single night or an entire month, any trip to Tulum is memorable.

As a baseline, we think that 5-7 days is a perfect amount of time to enjoy everything the city offers.

You’ll have time for the beach, to visit Mayan ruins, and even have enough extra days for a trip to a nearby destination. And, of course, you’ll still allow plenty of free moments to enjoy the luxury resorts, yoga retreats, and delicious food and drink Tulum has become famous for over the years.  

Let’s discover how many days you should spend in Tulum…

How Many Days if You Want to See Tulum’s Top Sights?

How many days should you stay in Tulum to pack in all the top sights? You can comfortably fit in many must-see destinations nearby in about five days.

This timeframe assumes you want some free moments to enjoy your resort and schedule some relaxation between sightseeing. Which, by the way, we highly recommend.

Gran Cenote

Gran Cenote Tulum

If you’re looking for one of the best snorkeling experiences in Tulum, Gran Cenote is hard to beat.

Does snorkeling in caves that seemingly go on forever sound like your idea of a great time in Tulum? Thought so. It’s one of the longest cave networks of its kind, so you’ll want to take advantage of it during your stay in Tulum.

Suggested Duration: 3-5 hours 

Cenote Hopping

Cenote Escondido, Tulum, Mexico

Following on from Gran Cenote, if you’re anything like us, you may need just a bit more time to visit the best cenotes in Tulum

It depends on how many you want to see, but we’d recommend cenote hopping to at least a few while you’re here. Cenote Calavera, Dos Ojos and Cenote Cristal are must-see options in the area.

If you make it to Cenote Cristal, add Cenote Escondido to your itinerary. It’s located next door and is a perfect 1-2 combination.

Suggested Duration: 1-3 days

Tulum Beach

Tulum Beach

Want to kick back on white sands overlooking the beautiful turquoise Caribbean waters on your trip to Tulum? It’s a no-brainer.

One of the most popular parts of Tulum isn’t just great for swimming and sun tans; it’s also a prime place to eat, drink, and people-watch. You’ll want to allot ample time to fit in this must-see local sight.

Electronic dance music is wildly popular here with locals and tourists, and some beach festivals last for several days or longer. So if you’re a big fan of EDM, you should stay a couple of days longer, depending on where you go and what’s happening at the time.

Suggested Duration: 3-7 days

Tulum Town

Kaan Tulum

You’ll want to make time to wander through Tulum Town on your trip to experience a more laid-back vibe with great food and drink. You’ll find a great mix of tourists and locals with plenty of opportunities to make friends over a cocktail and a snack. 

Be sure to eat some street tacos while you’re here. You’ll thank us later. 

Suggested Duration: 1-2 days

Tulum Tower

Tulum Tower is a way to see Tulum from above without climbing the nearest pyramid. 

Whether you want to experience the ride at night or in the daytime, it’s a great way to look out at the scenery and have a cocktail or snack while perched high above the Yucatan Peninsula.

So take some time when you land and schedule a trip to the top of one of our favorite activities in Tulum.

Suggested Duration: 30 minutes

How Many Days to Spend in Tulum to Explore More of the Riviera Maya? 

Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya

If you couldn’t tell by now, we love visiting Tulum because there is so much to do nearby – you need to budget extra time to explore more of the area.

But how many days do you need in Tulum to see the best destinations along the Riviera Maya? Let’s look at our favorite spots and how long you should spend in each.

Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve

sian-ka'an biosphere

Making extra time for this UNESCO World Heritage site and national park is a must when you visit Tulum. How many days do you need in Tulum to experience Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve?

To see the 100+ million acres of incredible natural beauty, you’ll want to dedicate at least one day here. Believe us, you’ll be glad you had extra opportunities to see anything from Jaguars to Tapirs while you’re here.

Suggested Duration: 1-2 days 



One location that’s becoming more popular to visit when going to Tulum is Akumal. We can see why.

The stunning white sand beaches are a draw in their own right, with beautiful fish and an abundance of sea turtles. There’s enough to do here to spend an entire day – or longer if you want to spend a few nights at one of the stunning beachside resorts here.

Ready to add an extra day to your trip? We thought so.

Suggested Duration: 1-3 days

Xel-Ha Park

If you’re looking for adventure and excitement in Tulum, look no further than Xel-Ha Park in Quintana Roo.

Snorkeling, zip biking, and enjoying some food and drinks are all part of the draw. Time flies when you’re having fun, so you’ll most likely stay at the aquatic theme park most of the day.

Suggested Duration: 1 day

Zipline & ATV Through the Jungle

If you want to experience the wilder side of Riviera Maya, visit the jungles and caves of Mexico on an outdoor adventure you’ll never forget.

You’ll want to budget a half day between transportation and the tour, but it’s an outdoor adventure you’ll never forget.  We think you’ll like it.

Suggested Duration: 4 hours

How Many Days in Tulum if You Want to See Ancient Ruins

Muyil Ruins

Visiting Tulum is an archeologist’s dream. Not only are you a (relatively) short drive from some of the most astonishing Mayan Ruins, but the locations within Tulum are equally impressive.

If you want to see some historic pieces of Tulum that have been standing for centuries, you’ll want to dedicate some extra time.

But how much should you set aside for each? 

Tulum Archeological Zone

Tulum Ruins

Visiting Tulum wouldn’t be complete without stopping by Tulum Archeological Zone.

You’ll want to set aside plenty of time to walk around the ancient ruins while you visit Tulum. Also, save an extra hour to enjoy the beach below for a truly memorable experience.

Want to see another archeological marvel on your trip? We’d recommend checking out one of our favorite locations and booking a tour that includes Coba; it’s well worth taking the extra time to do so.

Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours 

Muyil Ruins

Muyil Ruins

If you’re keen to explore ancient locations that are a little less famous than the nearby Tulum Archeological site, Muyil Ruins are an excellent choice. 

What makes this one of the best destinations in Tulum? Large stone tablets with hieroglyphics illustrating a piece of ancient history are the main draw here. 

There are many other archeological relics here, too, including the Mayan temples that make up Gran Plaza. Take a trip to the Muyil Ruins and see why it’s one of the well-kept secrets you need to make time for in Tulum.

Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours

Coba Ruins

Coba Ruins

Though not technically part of Tulum, the nearby Coba Ruins are a must-see when you visit the area. 

Be sure to take a tour and experience a guided walk through the sprawling complex if it fits into your itinerary. It’s a large site that will take you some time to walk through, but if you’re in a hurry, you can rent a bike. 

Also, be sure to check out the nearby cenotes. There are 3 to choose from, our favorite being Cenote Calavera, but they’re all great in their own right.

Suggested Duration: 5-6 hours

Xcaret Park

Xcaret Park

Fancy visiting an adventure park and Mayan ruins on the same day? Xcaret park is an excellent choice. 

Staying in the hotel on-site? We think that’s a great idea as you’ll have access to the different parks where you can choose from swimming, learning about history, or choosing numerous adventures at the amusement parks. 

Suggested Duration: 2 days 

How Many Days Needed in Tulum When Adding Nearby Destinations

Coco Tulum

When people ask, “how long should I stay in Tulum,” it often comes down to figuring out how many other destinations you want to add to your trip. 

It goes without saying that there is a whole lot to do in Tulum. From exceptional resorts and spas to a vibrant dining scene, you’ll experience the best of the Yucatan Peninsula on your stay. 

But Tulum is also only a few hours drive from some of the most unforgettable destinations in Mexico. 

So how many days do you need in Tulum if you want to add some nearby locations to your vacation? Let’s take a look.

Chichén Itzá

Chichen Itza, Yucatan, Mexico El Caracol

For many people, traveling to the Yucatan Peninsula is primarily to check out some must-visit historical locations in Mexico.

Of these, perhaps the most well-known is Chichén Itzá. But how long do you need to see Chichén Itzá? You can make it a day trip and see everything we love about the historical site. 

Be sure to book a tour when you go. While it may be tempting to see the ancient ruins on your own, you’ll want to spend the extra money and hire a tour guide if you can afford it. 

Expect to spend an entire day between travel and the tour when it’s all said and done. Still, a trip to Valladolid is becoming an increasingly popular way to extend your trip to Tulum while discovering a remarkable city of its own.

Suggested Duration: 1 day



The Caribbean Sea is a big reason many travelers visit Tulum and the nearby towns and beaches. But one of the world’s best snorkeling and diving sites is just a couple of hours from Tulum, so make a trip to Cozumel if it’s within your budget and timeframe. 

How many days do you need in Tulum to reach Cozumel? If you want to take your time and enjoy the island, we recommend 1-2 days in Cozumel.

Suggested Duration: 2 days

Practical Tips for Planning Your Tulum Trip 

Cenote Escondido, Tulum, Mexico

Visiting Tulum is an exciting experience you’ll enjoy no matter your timeframe. But when you travel to Tulum, there are some things you should know that can save you time and money so you can enjoy every minute of each day you’re there.

Here are some practical tips for planning your Tulum trip.

Reaching Tulum

Tulum Beach

Most visitors get to Tulum by flying into Cancun International Airport (CUN). Once you get to Cancun, you can rent a car and drive to Tulum in around 2 hours.

When deciding how many days you’ll be in Tulum, be sure to budget time to reach your destination and figure out the best plan for your vacation. Figuring out your schedule ahead of time may allow you to see more sights while you’re there. 

Getting Around

Tulum Ruins

While you can get by relying on public transport in Tulum (it’s also very walkable), driving is convenient for getting from place to place. That said, there can be challenging terrain and areas where you can’t access gas stations. 

Be sure to do your homework and prepare ahead of time if you visit remote locations. And if you’re staying at a hotel or resort in Tulum, check ahead to verify they have parking available to save you the time and money of parking off-site.


Azulik Hotel 3

Tulum is full of lovely places to stay, from boutique hotels to luxury resorts. But many of them (minus the more upscale hotels) will only take cash.

So instead of paying hefty fees, convert your currency to Mexican Pesos before arriving, or you’ll have to take the time to find a local bank at the last minute to avoid a poor exchange rate. 

Wondering where to stay in Tulum? Read our handy guide.

Time Your Trip to Save Money

Azulik Hotel 2

You can save a considerable amount of money if you schedule your vacation during the off-peak season. 

By cutting costs and planning your vacation to Tulum using our travel tips, you may free up some time and cash to enjoy every minute of your trip, no matter how many days in Tulum you have.